FdM:Arch’s 61×61 House, designed for an energy trader and his family, concepted to be as sustainable and energy conscious as possible. So named because it is a 61-foot-long square (the biggest floor plan allowed on the site), the Houston-based home pays homage to Mies Van Der Rohe’s 50×50 house. Powered primarily by solar energy, this house in the heart of America’s oil capital represents a dream and a counterpoint to the world of fossil fuel energy.
The 61×61 House’s square plan is organized around an interior green courtyard. Void of a delineated front and back, the home’s square shape addresses the two contiguous lots on which it is built. The roof is an array of north-facing saw tooth skylights whose southern exposures are covered in photovoltaic and solar hot water panels. These panels store their energy in batteries located in the garage roof, which then power the house in the evening. This design reduces the home’s (and family’s) demand “on the grid,” so to speak, and is as close to self-sufficient as possible.
- Place Houston, TX
- Date 2005
- Client An energy trader
- Area 3,700 SF
- Architect Francois de Menil Architect, PC
- Structural Engineer Liam O’Hanlon Engineering, PC, Port Washington, NY
- MEP Engineer Plus Group, PLLC, New York, NY
- Landscape Architect Francois de Menil Architect, PC
- Lighting OneLux Studio, LLC
- Contractor R. B. Ratcliff & Associates, Inc.